Tourism conference to explore computers as advertising tool $3 million budget boost to market Md. attractions


The Maryland Governor's Tourism Industry Conference will meet Oct. 22 through 24 at the Best Western Invitation Inn/Comfort Inn in Edgewood.

Those attending the conference, which is expected to attract about 250 people, will discuss ways to use computer technology to promote tourist attractions and events throughout the state.

This is the 15th year for the annual conference. It is sponsored by the Maryland Tourism Council Inc., a trade association, and the Maryland Office of Tourism Development.

Maryland's tourism budget is $8.5 million, up by $3 million, according to Mary Jo McCulloch, spokeswoman for the Maryland Tourism Council.

"This is the first year the state has strongly committed to promoting tourism," she said.

Last year's $5.5 million budget was used to pay for staff and to produce and mail tourism packets to interested callers.

The extra $3 million will be used to market Maryland in a 400- to 600-square-mile radius, up from the 200 square miles now covered, Ms. McCulloch said.

The additional money will allow Maryland to advertise its tourist attractions in New York, Ohio, West Virginia and North Carolina.

Currently, the state advertises in Pennsylvania, northern Virginia, Delaware and New Jersey, she said.

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